Menopause Diagnosis: How Reliable Are Home Test Kits?

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Menopause Diagnosis How Reliable Are Home Test Kits

Menopause is a period of time that ushers in many changes to a woman’s life. Woman can say goodbye to monthly periods and the need to buy pads and tampons, but they also are at an increased risk for conditions like stroke and osteoporosis. Because of this, many women want to know when they are entering this period of life.

Of course, with proper health and care for oneself, the risks are easily reduced to normal levels. To get a menopause diagnosis, women can go to a doctor, or they may choose to get a home test kit.

What Are Home Test Kits?

“These tests are qualitative, and they only tell one if they have elevated FSH levels, not if they are undergoing menopausal climacteric”

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Menopause home test kits are used to determine the level of follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) in a woman’s urine. FSH is produced by the pituitary gland and rises each month, stimulating the ovaries to continue developing an egg. Throughout the end of the menstrual cycle, the levels of FSH slowly return to normal.

However, as a woman enters her menopausal years, the levels of FSH become elevated again. These tests are qualitative, and they only tell one if they have elevated FSH levels, not if they are undergoing menopausal climacteric. Some of the common home test kits include Reveal, SELFCheck, and the Female Hormone Test.

How Reliable is It?

In terms of the reliability of menopause home test kits, the tests itself is reliable. The tests are very good at picking up on elevated FSH levels and informing the user of this. The problem with the tests is that they are ultimately unable to yield a menopause diagnosis with one hundred percent accuracy. FSH levels can vary throughout a person’s life, so these tests are not able to provide a diagnosis alone.

However, these tests are useful for women who are experiencing symptoms of menopausal climacteric and want to see if their hormone levels match up with their suspicions. This can allow a woman to know if she needs to visit a doctor.

Where to Buy It

“Home test kits can be found online through a variety of providers”

Menopause home test kits can be purchased in a variety of places. Many stores sell these as over the counter kits that can be taken in the privacy of one’s own home. Drug stores like Rite Aid and Walgreens’s carry the tests, and some stores that have a pharmacy department may also have a home test kit.

Home test kits can also be found online through a variety of providers. Online providers of home test kits include drug store websites, eBay, and Amazon among other options. Purchasing online allows one to remain at home and utilize the test at home.

When to See a Doctor

“a doctor’s help should be sought out if a woman under the age of forty is experiencing symptoms of menopausal climacteric”

The symptoms associated with menopausal climacteric are vary from woman to woman and, in some cases, from day to day. Dr. Carrie Bell, an OB-GYN at the University of Michigan, says that sometimes “when a period stops, women feel OK and they don’t need a doctor to diagnose menopause.” Of course, this is not always the case. Sometimes the symptoms prevent one from pursuing daily activities, and, in these cases, a woman should seek help from a gynecologist.

Additionally, if a home test kit is used and the FSH reading does not align with symptoms, then the person should also seek additional aid from a doctor to rule out other possibilities. Finally, a doctor’s help should be sought out if a woman under the age of forty is experiencing symptoms of menopausal climacteric. While it is possible that it is just happening earlier in life than the average woman, it may also be a sign of an underlying condition that needs addressed.

The menopausal years bring about many changes to a woman’s life, and the changes are different for each individual. Women who are going through menopausal symptoms have the option to use a home test kit to aid them in figuring out what is going on. These kits can help to inform the choice to see a doctor; although, these tests cannot diagnose menopausal climacteric themselves.

For women seeking a test kit, the internet and drug stores provide many options. The choice to see a doctor over the symptoms will vary from woman to woman, but, overall, the transition in the menopausal years is just another step forward in life.

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Sources & References:

https://www.fda.gov/medicaldevices/productsandmedicalprocedures/invitrodiagnostics/homeusetests/ucm125824.htm

https://www.webmd.com/menopause/guide/home-menopause-testing-kits

https://healthblog.uofmhealth.org/womens-health/a-gynecologist-answers-5-common-questions-about-menopause

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